Disconnect and De-Stress

Most of us have succumb to mobile technology in one way or another, and not just a little, a lot. Whether it's for work or to be "social" these devices are monopolizing our attention, free time and affecting our wellbeing. We rely on our devices for many things; inspiration through Pinterest, connecting with friends who live five minute away on Facebook, or portraying a way of life we want other people to think we have on Instagram. So let's turn this on its head and get back to a life we used to have not so long ago. Let's disconnect.

Instead of looking at where you could be, look at where you are - open your eyes to your own surroundings. There's something redeeming about every one of our environments, whether it's street art or woodland, beaches or architecture, see the beauty in reality.

Spend physical time with your friends rather than sending them pictures of yourself looking goofy, invite them over and bake some cakes or make some hot chocolate. Baking is a great tactile activity and there's a tasty result at the end you can all enjoy! I mean who doesn't love cake, chocolate and conversation?

Plan a day out and ban the use of mobile phones; too many people spend their time taking pictures and documenting their so-called enjoyment for social media. The trouble is these selfie sessions are so forced it negates the fun, so put your phone away, have a laugh, tell stories and enjoy each other's company - not everything has to be shared, it's far more important to create real memories.

Read a book not a device. Books are an incredible medium for art, culture, stories, learning - conjuring up imagery through your own imagination. The written word can take you away from where you are and transport you to another time, another place, even make you feel like another person altogether. Reading helps to switch off from your busy life, forget your stresses and troubles and truly detach yourself from technology.

It's important to take a step back sometimes, reevaluate and digest. Disconnecting from our devices, pausing to rediscover what's important and what's real is an essential part of our wellbeing. Introducing some technology free time into your routine will result in a happier, more carefree you, and it's a lot less stressful than fighting to keep up with everyone else in the land of make-believe.

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730 West Randolph Chicago, IL